5 Key Factors That May Be Affecting Your Refrigerator Compressor

From preserving the freshness of vegetables for days to ensuring our favourite ice cream stays perfectly frozen, the refrigerator is an indispensable part of our lives. So, when an unexpected noise emanates from the fridge, it can be disconcerting. 

If your fridge has suddenly broken down, more often than not, the refrigerator compressor is the culprit behind any such disruptions. The fridge compressor is the heart of the cooling system. 

In this blog, we look at the potential causes that may be behind the compressor not running on the fridge. 

What Is A Refrigeration Compressor?

The refrigerator compressor is akin to the beating heart of the appliance, playing a crucial role in its cooling mechanism. It performs the essential task of circulating refrigerant—a chemical inducing a cooling effect through expansion or vaporisation—across the entire system. 

Comprising both a motor and a pump, the compressor operates when the internal temperature surpasses the set point. This activation is prompted by the inevitable loss of cold air and the infiltration of warmer air into the fridge during regular usage. Though often overlooked, the refrigerator’s compressor assumes a substantial role in maintaining a cool environment, safeguarding the freshness and longevity of the stored food.

Let’s explore the reasons why a refrigerator compressor might stop humming.

Old Age:

Similar to other mechanical components, compressors are not immortal. They have a finite lifespan, and wear and tear are inevitable over the years. If you’ve started with a refrigerator equipped with a high-quality compressor, you’ve likely enjoyed more years of trouble-free service. 

However, signs of aging may manifest as unusual compressor noises from the fridge during operation or unsettling clunks when the compressor shuts off. In such cases, the cost of fridge compressor replacement can be high, often prompting homeowners to consider a new refrigerator. Our experienced repair technicians can provide guidance, evaluate the health of your compressor, and advise on the most economically sensible course of action.

Too Much or Too Little Load:

Balancing the load within your refrigerator is paramount to ensuring the longevity of its compressor. Running an empty fridge for extended periods or overloading the refrigerating chamber can both contribute to compressor strain. In the former scenario, the refrigerant may exist in a problematic mixture of vapour and liquid, leading to potential failure. 

On the flip side, an overly packed fridge, especially with items generating heat, can overburden the compressor, causing the fridge compressor to turn hot over its safe levels. Striking a balance in the load distribution ensures optimal compressor performance and extends its lifespan. Regularly auditing the contents of your refrigerator can help you maintain this delicate equilibrium.

Dirty Condenser Coils:

A little-known but critical aspect of compressor health lies in the cleanliness of the condenser coils. Typically located on the back or underneath the refrigerator, these coils are prone to accumulating dust and debris over time. This buildup not only impedes the appliance’s cooling efficiency but also forces the compressor to work harder than necessary. 

Fortunately, this issue can be resolved. Our repair technicians can efficiently clean the coils, restoring the refrigerator’s overall efficiency and alleviating unnecessary stress on the compressor. Regular maintenance, including coil cleaning, is a simple yet effective strategy to ensure the prolonged functionality of your refrigerator.

Contaminated Refrigerant:

The inner workings of a refrigerator rely on the harmonious interaction of two substances—refrigerant and oil. Any infiltration of foreign substances into the compressor is considered contamination and poses a direct threat to its optimal operation. 

If contamination occurs, it is crucial to address the issue promptly. Our highly skilled repair experts can perform a system flush, removing any contaminants and restoring the compressor to its intended functionality. Regular refrigerator maintenance, including checks for refrigerant purity, can prevent contamination issues and prolong the lifespan of the freezer compressor.

High Voltage Surge:

Nature occasionally flexes its muscles with powerful lightning strikes, and when these surges occur, they can wreak havoc on home appliances, including refrigerators. The sudden influx of electrical current during a high-voltage surge can cause irreparable damage to the compressor and its relay, generating excessive heat. This heat, in turn, can fry the inner components of the appliance.

The Last Word 

If you’re dealing with a malfunctioning refrigerator compressor, the information provided so far will help you make informed decisions. Whether it is acknowledging the natural aging process, maintaining a balanced load, ensuring the cleanliness of condenser coils, or safeguarding against external factors like high voltage surges, recognising the early signs of compressor distress allows for timely repairs or replacements. 

Our dedicated appliance repair technicians are ready to assist, ensuring your refrigerator continues to fulfil its vital role in preserving the freshness of your food. Regular maintenance and promptly addressing any performance issues will significantly extend the life of your refrigerator, allowing it to function efficiently for years to come. 

When it comes to cooling systems, whether it be your refrigerator or the best portable air conditioner in Australia, our technicians have the skills and expertise to deal with any issues that may arise. For any assistance, contact us today

While predicting and preventing lightning strikes is challenging, investing in surge protectors for your electronic appliances, including the refrigerator, can offer a layer of defence against these unpredictable events.